It is estimatedthat 80% of Americans will at some point suffer from low back pain- and sad as that is, I believe it! A majority of my clients come to me with back pain complaints. You or someone you know suffers or has suffered from back pain.
This is an epidemic in the US. And I believe its a result of bad posture!
Back pain can come in all forms and pain levels. From slight twinges to full on spasms. This can be triggered by something simple like bending over to pick something up or going for a run.
Lets break it down a bit– Your back is basically your spinal column. For those of you who dont know- its that S shape curvature thats made up of smaller pieces of bones (vertebrae) into one long augmented bone. Basically its there for stability of our skeleton! Thats a pretty big job for something thats not very big! (just long!) So when you hear of spinal disc degeneration disease, spondylolysthesis, spinal stenosis, disc herniation- it can sound pretty scary! And it is- to a point. Basically the one thing that is supposed to hold your skeleton steady and be flexible enough for you to bend/walk/sit with ease- NOW HAS an ISSUE.
Most people when they get a back diagnosis- they let it define them. “Hi im Joe and I have a disc herniation”. Ok so maybe they dont come out and say it during the introductions- but they do let it affect their everyday life. Its something you always hear about from them. You constantly have to modify your life bc Joe has a back issue and cant do what every one else can. -And I get it! Totally! My husband suffered from low back pain and I’ve seen it at its worst. He bent to pick up something very heavy a few years back- and had to be practically carried home. However, the difference here is that he did not allow this to define him- and thats because his wife is a Posture Therapist! Yes -you may laugh- but its true. People let it define them because they do not know any other way out. They think that that small section in their spine is messed up and ALWAYS will be. However- when you learn more about your body, your posture and how your spine is affected by bad posture, you start to realize that that diagnosis is merely your bodiesway of telling you something FINALLY gave out! The solution?—FIGURE out the ROOT CAUSE of the SYMPTOM/DIAGNOSIS! Once you do that, you no longer are afraid of whats going on in the back- you fight to fix it. Think Position VS Condition. Its the position of your joints that caused the condition (diagnosis) –not the other way around!
Your spine naturally has to have an S shape curve to be at its best in stability and flexibility. Of course over time, we tend to lose that curve. Most of us get more curve at the top and have more of a C shape spine. Because the spine is all connected, when the top is too rounded, the bottom will flatten out. If your lower spine no longer has the ability to extend or flex, then you will compensate in other ways. The vertebrae have to be tightly compacted together to properly absorb shock and to correctly stabilize your body. When you have too much curve or too flat, the vertebrae will pull away from each other or compress. This is what causes the disc to herniate, slip, pinch etc.So if you look at just the section of the spine that has degenerated then yes you see a big problem. But you have to ask- why did it slip? why did it degenerate? Why only in that spot? If its an age thing…then why isnt everyone at that age having the same issue? When you step back and look at the bigger picture, i.e your WHOLE BODY, you will notice the postural deviations that caused this spine issue. If your hips are misaligned- there is no way your lower spine is going to stay flexible and functional. The hip will lose function and over work the back! If you sit too much- your gluts atrophy- when you go to stand up they do not have the ability to fully stabilize your hips from the back-so what tends to help out? Your lower BACK! If your shoulders are rotated and elevated- your spine will pay for that too! Remember, the body is a unit – everything is connected and works together.
You and Joe may both have the same type of diagnosis or same type of pain- but you will have different posture issues. Same diagnosis—different treatment plan. It all boils down to -once again- THE BODY IS A UNIT AND MUST BE TREATED AS ONE.
SO if you are suffering from back pain- ITS TIME to look at what the REST of your body is doing.
Don’t let your diagnosis define you-
Find the root cause + fix it = Change your quality of life!
If you are experiencing back pain and would like to see what your posture is doing- email me your photos (front, R side, L side, back) and I will give you a complimentary eval!